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    Region's power grid should be fine for summer demand, operator says

    May 15, 2023 - Joe Napsha, The Tribune-Review, Greensburg


      May 14—There should be sufficient power to meet the demand for electricity on stifling hot summer days, the operator of the electric power grid serving Pennsylvania and 12 other states said.

      But electric grid operator PJM Interconnection of Valley Forge cautioned that extreme scenarios could tighten its reserve of electric power needed for some 65 million people in the grid.

      The National Weather Service is predicting higher-than-normal temperatures this summer for most of the U.S., and particularly the East Coast.

      PJM projects the peak demand for electricity this summer at about 156,000 megawatts — a megawatt is 1 millon watts of power — and its studies on the reliability of the grid shows it can supply power when the loads near 163,000 MW. The grid operator has more than 186,000 MW of installed generating capacity, with resources in reserve to cover historically observed conditions.

      PJM can lower the demand for power at certain times by informing customers who have agreed in advance to have power temporarily interrupted in exchange for a capacity payment to reduce their load. This could occur in the event of extraordinary electricity demand and high generator outages, PJM said.

      "We have learned through experience to expand the set of possibilities we prepare for," said Mike Bryson, senior vice president for operations.

      PJM's all-time one-day power use record was set in the summer of 2006 at 165,563 MW.

      Joe Napsha is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Joe by email at or via Twitter .


      (c)2023 The Tribune-Review (Greensburg, Pa.)

      Visit The Tribune-Review (Greensburg, Pa.) at

      Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.


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